Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Editing My Life

Detective Johnson
—Poems by Michael Lee Johnson, Itasca, IL
—Photos Courtesy of Michael Johnson


December 1st 2016,
detective Johnson here.
I see my shrink for the 1st time,
I’m low maintenance, one every 3 months,
Dr. Pennypecker.  He is tight ass conservative type
with a raisin dry personality who tries to keep sober
and focused so he can focus on me.
I’m a grade 3 drop out with a degree
in elementary school bullshit.
I ask him how his children are.
“I only have one, let’s focus on YOU!"
Nice haircut, Dr. Pennypecker,
have you ever noticed how the poor people
who usually come here, are Mexicans,
and they all can afford a $60 a month cell phone?
“Let’s stay focused!”
I tell Dr. Pennypecker I love Jesus, I love the Holy Ghost,
I love the Father; most of these Mexicans do too.
With all these rain clouds up above outside this window here,
I believe we are all together until I pass.
“Now that is interesting, let’s focus on that!”
I tell Dr. Pennypecker when I get upset about something
I know is my fault and I do have problems
sleeping but I don’t dwell on that too much.
“Let’s focus on that!"
Is 20 milligrams of Citalopram, antidepressants, generic,
enough or should we cut it back?"

Oh no, don’t do that, Dr. Pennypecker.  By the way, Dr. Pennypecker,
how do you cut your hair in the back when you have your own Wal-Mart
Pro Clipper Haircutting Kit set on #2?
"I put a paper back there and I put a mirror back there and I sort of do,
no, no, let's not focus on that!"

I walk out the door ready for my next appointment 3 months down the road.
I open the door for a stranger ready for his appointment; I say, "have a good day."
He is so self-centered that his long hair and the way he moves back and forth
sways, swings, doesn't say anything he is so damn self-absorbed in his own gray cloud.

This was my day with Dr. Pennypecker.


Fern Dickson life untrue to her marital vows, peachy,
what did you expect from the Indiana Rockville whore?
Daddy was welder man, sweat, bleeder bending
over hot steel rolls all day, he was a verb man,
Oliver farmer, noun, welder machine man.
Fern Dickson was a sneak out the door whore, peachy,
2:30 pm. daily was her homemaker check-out time.
Waddling penguin style down to Kubiak’s bar
to write her own mystery novel.
Demolition of their marriage, started with table hopping at the bar,
peachy, free drinks and a celebration of wholesale sex.
Narrative, family circles and circuses run in the gypsies of whores,
daddy dog, dancing sin, with the Rockville whore.
Daddy comes home from work,
angered at the burned potato fries,
cold Sauerkraut, Bush's fresh out of the can, 
maple cured baked beans, cold Cole Slaw, A&P grocery store.
Narrative, old prostitute whore habits die-hard.
Coon hunting, fox hunting daddy, I’m the storyteller
of this Rockville, Indiana whore.
Her brass tits suck then stuck in the mouths of strangers at the local bar, peachy.
Fern has no regular job, bar hopping, table jumping,
became her unemployment check, salary, entertainment and career, peachy.
This cemetery now is Archangel Lucifer, secretary, note taker
for the Rockville whore.



Paint your face with cosmetic smiles.
Toss your breast around with synthetic plastic.
Don’t leak single secrets to strangers—
locked in your trailer 8-foot wide by 50-foot long
with twisted carrots, cucumbers, weak batteries,
and colorful dildos—you’ve even given them names:
Adams’s pleasure skin, big Ben on the raise, Rasputin:
the Mad Monk—oh no, no, no.
Your legs hang with the signed signatures
of playboys’ and drifters’ ink.
The lot rent went up again this year.
Paint your face, walk the streets
again with cosmetic smiles.

 The Mad Monk


Next life I will be a little higher on the pecking order.
No longer a dishwasher at the House of Pancakes,
or Ricky's All Day Grill, or Sunday night small dog thief.
I will evolve into the Prince of Bullfrogs, crickets don't bother,
swamp flies don't bother me—I eat them.  Alligators I avoid.
I urinate on lily pads, mate across borders, continents at will.
Someone else from India can wash my dishes locally for me.
Forward all complaints to that religious office of Indian affairs.


I edit my life
clothesline pins & clips
hang to dry,
dirty laundry,
I turn poetic hedonistic
in my early 70's
reviewing the joys
and the sorrows
of my journey.
I find myself wanting
a new review, a new product,
a new time machine,
a new internet space,
a new planet where
we small, wee creative
creatures can grow.

 Children in Sky

Today’s LittleNip:

—Michael Lee Johnson

There is a full moon,
distant in this sky tonight,

Gray planets planted
on an aging white face.

Children, living and dead,
love the moon with small hearts.

Those in heaven already take gold thread,
drop the moon down for us all to see.

Those alive with us, look out their
bedroom windows tonight,
we smile, then prayers, then sleep.


Many thanks to Michael Lee Johnson for today’s poems and pix! Michael’s poetry may be heard at


 Celebrate poetry!

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